A New Earth by Eckhart Tolle Book Review: The Path To Awakening
Followed by the extraordinary guide to spiritual enlightenment Power of Now, A New Earth is so much more than just a guide - it is a life-changing challenge to humanity. Now, giving such a statement, I feel most pressured to back it up! More so, to elaborate on the challenge raised... Is it too ambitious, frightening or purely ridiculous? Or is it destined to change the world for the good?
One or the other, A New Earth is widely regarded as one of the most influential spiritual books of our time. For all of those who never completely understood all that enlightenment business... This is it. A book that explains it in detail and in words that "ordinary" human beings can also comprehend. It serves the path of awakening.
As given out by the name of the book - E. Tolle shifts our attention from ourselves and our earthly problems - to a rather much more significant matter - the earth itself. Thousands of years we, as a human species, lived in the dark, caring for nothing else but what's around us within the radius of as far as our ego foresees.
Tolle urges us to stop this madness and join the small group of people that are awakening. It's time to create a new Earth, which foundations are built on selflessness, love and compassion. Tolle takes us on the journey of realisation by starting with the very beginning of recognition of beauty.
It all started with a flower.
The Buddha is said to have given a "silent sermon" once during which he held up a flower and gazed at it. After a while, one of those present, a monk called Mahakasyapa, began to smile. He is said to have been the only one who had understood the sermon. According to legend, that smile (realization) was handed down by twenty-eight successive masters and much later became the origin of Zen. The first recognition of beauty was one of the most significant events in the evolution of human consciousness.
So, what happened? Why are we all not the children of nature, sitting in the meadows, smelling flowers and smiling, uncontrollably? Well - life happened.
Long story short, we have lost the sense of Presence.
In A New Earth, Tolle is taking us on a journey to awakening throughout the ten chapters of the book. From the flowering of human consciousness, current state and humanity and the core and many faces of ego, to breaking free, finding who you truly are, and finding your inner purpose. Along the way, he introduces interesting concepts, such as pain body, reminds of the French existentialists' universal dilemma of alienation and the discusses the essence of suffering. The meaning of it is to show the human predicament, so we could see it more clearly. That is the first step to go beyond it.